Urban planning community

+ Reply to thread
Results 1 to 12 of 12

Thread: Advice on graduate schools

  1. #1
    Cyburbian
    Registered
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Austin
    Posts
    32

    Advice on graduate schools

    I'm trying to sort out my options & some unbiased advice would be helpful.

    Current Situation: I am applying to planning grad schools for the fall, my husband is applying to MBA schools - now that decisions are rolling in, I'm having a hard time figuring out what to do...

    Options:
    UNC (me)/Duke (him) - we've both been admitted but probably w/o funding (for either of us)
    Univ of Texas (both) - he's not been admitted (yet - interview next wk)& I have, but we live here, so in-state tuition, probably no funding 1st yr for me
    Penn (me)/Work (him) - ?? about funding, my family lives in Philly (his in Pgh) & its our ultimate goal to get back to the NE
    UIC (me)/ ??(him) - admitted w/ RA & tuition remission

    To clarify a few things: taking out loans is probably inevitable, my husband is not sold on the idea of MBA school (so not going is an option), we're both very open to moving

    So, what to do?

  2. #2
    Cyburbian zaphod's avatar
    Registered
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Stuck in the middle with... who?
    Posts
    74
    Quote Originally posted by Tasha View post
    I'm trying to sort out my options & some unbiased advice would be helpful.

    Current Situation: I am applying to planning grad schools for the fall, my husband is applying to MBA schools - now that decisions are rolling in, I'm having a hard time figuring out what to do...

    Options:
    UNC (me)/Duke (him) - we've both been admitted but probably w/o funding (for either of us)
    Univ of Texas (both) - he's not been admitted (yet - interview next wk)& I have, but we live here, so in-state tuition, probably no funding 1st yr for me
    Penn (me)/Work (him) - ?? about funding, my family lives in Philly (his in Pgh) & its our ultimate goal to get back to the NE
    UIC (me)/ ??(him) - admitted w/ RA & tuition remission

    To clarify a few things: taking out loans is probably inevitable, my husband is not sold on the idea of MBA school (so not going is an option), we're both very open to moving

    So, what to do?
    Thats a hard one. First, if your man is not "sold" on the idea of an MBA, why bother? I certainly wouldn't put in for a two year commitment I wasn't sold on.

    If your in Austin I may lean staying there. In state tuition is cheap, you don't have to move, and from what the nice people at UT have told me second year funding is way more likely than the first. I guess it would come down to what job prospects he has in Austin versus moving.

    Chicago also sounds like a good option. Having grown up in the Midwest I don't think your husband would have that hard of a time finding a job there. Plus Chicago is a pretty cool city.

    i don't know if anyone is going to be able to give you the kind of advice you want though.. Grad school just has too many variables that can be very personal depending on your situation.

    Or you could do what I do and go with your gut. My gut is only 50/50 however so I don't know if I should trust it all that much.
    "He was a dreamer, a thinker, a speculative philosopher... or, as his wife would have it, an idiot." Douglas Adams

  3. #3
    Cyburbian RubberStamp Man's avatar
    Registered
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Wherever mediocore planning lurks
    Posts
    99
    If going back to NE is your ultimate goal and you have family there to help support you then Penn sounds like the best. I take it though he won't be going to school at Penn?

    I think one of the first things you need to do is decide/rank your priorities: MBA, $, relocation. That should make your decision easier. I also think that in your situation the difference in planning schools are probably not as signficant as these other factors.

    Good luck.

  4. #4
    Cyburbian planr's avatar
    Registered
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Cambridge, MA
    Posts
    157
    My vote would be for Penn. As you and your husband probably know, Wharton is one of the best business schools in the country. I know PennDesign offers a dual planning/MBA, so maybe you can do some scouting for your hubby while you are taking classes and he can get a job locally and bide his time to figure out if that's what he really wants.
    "Try to be in two incredibly successful bands. If not, that's okay." -- Words to live by, courtesy of Dave Grohl

  5. #5
    Cyburbian
    Registered
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Cambridge, MA
    Posts
    74
    I'd go with Penn too if that's where you really wanna be. Penn's financial aid is not that great (~$8000, I heard when I visited), but taking out a loan is almost inevitable. Philadelphia on the other hand is very cheap to live in, and Wharton is a great place to be if your husband eventually makes up his mind about it.

  6. #6
    Cyburbian
    Registered
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Washington, DC
    Posts
    50
    yeah but i would imagine Duke has a stellar MBA program and lets be honest, do you think he can get in to Wharton? It must be so hard to get into that program that banking on that as an options seems slightly far fetched. No one really is a lock-in when a program is that good, right? The UNC scenario or the Penn scenario seem the most doable to me.

  7. #7
    Cyburbian
    Registered
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Austin
    Posts
    32
    Thanks everyone

    I'm hoping that visiting both UNC & Penn for their Open Houses will increase the "trust-your-gut" factor. Also, the $$ picture should become a little clearer by the end of month & while not the end-all be-all IS something to be considered.

    As far as the possibility of my husband going to Wharton - he applied to schools last year as well & ended up not going (Wharton said no) & w/o going into the details of his life's goals, I'm pretty sure it's all or nothing this year.

    I know that I'm not going to get the "magic" answer, but just getting some other opinions helps me to see things from all the angles. Thanks again.

  8. #8
    Cyburbian
    Registered
    Jun 2005
    Location
    chaos
    Posts
    873
    I'd look hard at UIC. Chicago has a lot of jobs and schools for him for whatever he decides to do. They have the best aid package for you. The RA thing, would that provide housing for you, for both of you? If so, that would cut out the high rent problem of the city. And it would not be that hard to shift back to NE after a few years.

    They're all good options, I don't think there is a wrong one among them.

  9. #9
    Member
    Registered
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Minneapolis, MN
    Posts
    2

    Minnesota?

    Hi everyone -
    I'm a newbee, so thanks in advance for hearing me out. Here's my dilemma: I'm interested in international development planning, especially developing urban slums. I've got huge offers to do the dual Master of Civil Eng/Master of Urban and Regional Planning program at the University of Minnesota (through the Institute of Tech. and the Humphrey School, respectively). I've now also been accepted to Harvard (MPP/UP), NYU, Columbia, and MIT. While I don't have financial aid decisions yet from anywhere other than MN - I highly doubt they'll be comparable. I want to work internationally initially, but eventually settle down - probably in MN, my hometown. Would it be crazy to turn down a free ride + stipend from the city I'll probably end up working in the long run? Or rather is it crazy to turn down Harvard/MIT/NYU no matter how much debt I'd have to take on? Anyone have any thoughts on planning at MN?

  10. #10
    Cyburbian
    Registered
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Washington, DC
    Posts
    50
    Quote Originally posted by cba934 View post
    Hi everyone -
    I'm a newbee, so thanks in advance for hearing me out. Here's my dilemma: I'm interested in international development planning, especially developing urban slums. I've got huge offers to do the dual Master of Civil Eng/Master of Urban and Regional Planning program at the University of Minnesota (through the Institute of Tech. and the Humphrey School, respectively). I've now also been accepted to Harvard (MPP/UP), NYU, Columbia, and MIT. While I don't have financial aid decisions yet from anywhere other than MN - I highly doubt they'll be comparable. I want to work internationally initially, but eventually settle down - probably in MN, my hometown. Would it be crazy to turn down a free ride + stipend from the city I'll probably end up working in the long run? Or rather is it crazy to turn down Harvard/MIT/NYU no matter how much debt I'd have to take on? Anyone have any thoughts on planning at MN?
    I do know that if you to a Harvard or MIT type school they will have enough money to send you to developing countries for studios that will most likely be free. I seriously doubt Minnesota would be able to do that for you and if they can it would probably only be once.

  11. #11
    Cyburbian
    Registered
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Dubai, United Arab Emirates
    Posts
    401
    I'm a Penn graduate.

    It's a nice school.

    But my suggestion is to go to the school that cost you the least at the end of the day. Salaries for most planners, unless you go into fiscal analysis consulting, aren't great. I received a goodly amount of grants and a RA position with the dorms that covered my living expenses, so I graduated with very minimal debt, but that can't be said for most of my classmates.

    You can get a job as a planner in the NE with a degree from out-of-state. Texas is a fine school. So is UNC.

  12. #12
    Cyburbian
    Registered
    Mar 2004
    Location
    new york
    Posts
    71
    Quote Originally posted by smapty View post
    I do know that if you to a Harvard or MIT type school they will have enough money to send you to developing countries for studios that will most likely be free. I seriously doubt Minnesota would be able to do that for you and if they can it would probably only be once.
    It'd be crazy to turn down Harvard. Although if you really have your heart set on working in slums, then try DPU at the University College London. That's ALL they talk about there. MIT has a good program too, probably more known than Harvard in that area.

+ Reply to thread

More at Cyburbia

  1. GPA at graduate schools
    Career Development and Advice
    Replies: 6
    Last post: 14 Oct 2008, 4:02 PM
  2. Graduate schools?
    Student Commons
    Replies: 2
    Last post: 12 Aug 2008, 8:19 PM
  3. Graduate school and career advice (was: Advice?)
    Career Development and Advice
    Replies: 5
    Last post: 17 Apr 2007, 11:09 AM
  4. Replies: 7
    Last post: 28 Mar 2007, 7:21 PM
  5. Canada graduate schools
    Student Commons
    Replies: 11
    Last post: 23 Feb 2006, 10:45 AM